My Kentucky trip-2014

kurtkurt Member
edited January 2014 in General Interest
Hey Guys/Gals, its that time again. time to go to the promised land and see the horses. My flight leaves tomorrow at 715 am,connects in phoenix where im meeting up with my friend Daria from Vegas who will fly with me to Louisville(southwest doesnt fly to Lexington). plan is to grab some white castle those greasy,unhealthy em by the bag full. will' probably make quick stop at the derby museum to visit with Barbaro,then head east to Lexington area where we will connect with My other friend. Laura..the one who helps at Old friends.
Unlike last year, weather may be an issue. last year we had 60+ every day..was great. this year, is expected to be alot colder with moisture. the big storm hitting the east hasnt altered my flights..yet..hope it doesnt.
once there, forecast calls for cold, rain n snow over the week. cant control it so will deal with what we get.
Saturdays Itinerary is pretty well set. we plan to hit the Kentucky horse park before it opens. the Man o war monument is located outside the gates so we can look at and photo it all before the gates open which we need because we have alot planned and not enough daylight to get it done.
were hoping to see and do everything we want to do at the khp in about 3 hours. if so, we plan to head down iron works pike to Spendthrift for about an hour and see the guys there. hopefully the ones i DIDNt see last year,like Malibu moon.
we have an appointment at 1pm at pin oak farm to see nijinskys last son Sky Classic and there new stallion Alternation.
if we end up being at the khp longer then planned, we will go to spendthrift AFTER pin oak. regardless, we plan on spending whatever time we have left in the day at OLD FRIENDS were Laura volunteers. Ive got photo requests from peeps here for Tinners way and Sunshine forever so i will be able to do those, as well as the photo request for Cigar, all on Saturday.
Sundays weather is suppose to be less the great but a few farms have open houses that ive been able to confirm, Crestwood, three chimneys and adena springs are all open Sunday for a little bit at least.
Lanes end told me NO OPEN HOUSE this year which seems sketchy as they always have one. its ok with me as LE,despite having alot of great horses, is the one farm ive always found to be not so fan friendly so im not crushed we wont be going there.
other places we have scheduled visits during the week are CLAIBORNE,OUR MIMS, DENALI,TAYLOR MADE,CALUMET, NUCKOLS,HILL-N-DALE,MILL RIDGE..and probably some ive forgotten but wont forget to visit.
another with a confirmed open houses that we will try and fit in is Coolmore and darley. Darley matters because Animal Kingdom was my co #1 priority on this trip. really excited to see him.
two farms that haven't bothered to reply to Emails that i visited last year are Winstar and castleton Lyons.
CL i can live without if need be. Winstar would be a big loss so were gonna continue to pursue that one
we've got a few smaller places planned as well that have are mostly resting places for great of the past such as count fleet,fair play and Mahuba.
all in all, should be a great week. i'll try n post pics as i go this year. so, with that all being said, Kentucky, Here we come!!!!


  • Sounds like a great trip. If you have any friends who are not horse-crazy, they probably think you're nuts. But it sure sounds like a great way to spend a week to me.
    I daresay my fellow horse-loving paupers all envy you. Have a good and safe trip.
  • Wow! Quite an itinerary! I hope you can cover all of your plans...I have faith that you will be able to time manage your visits!...based on last year's exciting set of photos you got! Can't wait to see your 2014 collection! :o)
  • edited January 2014
    Kurt, please try to get pics of Landaluce's grave, if she's at Spendthrift yet. Thanks!
  • VAL- i'd be surprised if shes there yet, will definitly ask though as i loved her when i was a kid. spendthrift is on Saturday for of the farms i did forget to mention was sierra farm, home of St. trinians..we got invited back to see her again..and hopefully her lonhro Colt will be somewhere near by, would love to see of this writing, the flight leaves in 2 hours, 15 minutes..gotta get to you all tonight from ky
  • I so enjoyed reading all about your previous Kentucky farm tours and visits with the many horses. I loved how detailed you were. I could almost envision being there with you. I cannot wait for this year's edition along with your photos! Have fun!
  • Kurt, you carry with you a lot of spirit from us out here. I for one, would LOVE to do a trip like that but alas, have no horsey friends who would/could join in such an adventure. Have fun! I loved the reports from your last trip.
  • Good luck with the weather and bring cold weather gear. Temps are supposed to plummet early next week. Saturday will probably be the best day for a while with sun, but it is still going to be cold.
  • Sounds like a great trip, say hello to Go For Gin! I'll be there in May.
  • Kurt, have a great trip! I hope the weather cooperates for you!
  • hey guys, Monday morning, 530 am,currently -3 degrees outside..and dropping by the minute, rain late Sunday turned to snow while i was sleeping. theirs some snow outside the window, doesn't look like alot though. problem is, with windchill, its suppose to be 15-25 BELOW ZERO today. Im a California guy, i wore shorts on the plane so, not real ready to go outside in this stuff. in a couple hours, im gonna gonna call the farms we have planned for the day and see if we can still come out due to the extreme cold and ice etc..might end up being a lost day. oh well, will know in a few hours. that being said, i can try and get you guys caught up on the trip so, here we go....
    the flights started ok Friday. got lucky as almost every flight north of Kentucky was cancelled so the airports were brutal but both flights were more or less on time and we had uneventful flights into Louisville where we arrived at about 415 pm by the time we got luggage and the rental car.
    since the light was still good we headed over to Churchill downs because my friend Daria is a Kentucky first timer who wanted to see the Barbaro memorial. first thing i notices is a new sign next to the statue that says "please do not climb on the statue, this is the final resting place of derby winner Barbaro" which makes me think theres been no shortage of idiots climbing on the statue...sorta like the zenyatta statue at SA.
    after a few minutes with Barbaro, we headed over to white castle to get my greasy burger fix satisfied before driving over to Lexington for the night.


    because daria has to go home before me, we set a pretty ambitious schedule for each day with Saturday being the longest. we started out at 8 am knowing there were a few things we wanted to see that weren't part of any farm or business so we knew we could knock them out early, we headed out iron works pike, past the KHP, and a few farms to a small road that unfortunately i don't remember the name. turned left and drove a couple miles to a seemingly misplaced headstone bearing the name of DOMINO. the marker sits next to the road in front of Mt Brilliant farm and reads "here lies the fleetest runner the american turf has ever known..." its probably 3 feet tall, and 3 feet wide and is actually pretty cool.
    after a few minutes with Domino, we made a u-turn and went less then a mile to another place alot of people aren't aware of MAN O WAR FARM. its not open to the public so ya cant see it up close but the stallion barn that once housed Man O war is visible from the road. i took out the big zoom and an extender and actually got a few decent pics of the barn from a distance that i will get posted at some point (so many pics, i probably wont get posted for a few days,sorry guys). it was pretty cool to see the barn even if its just a barn at first look.
    following some pics outside MOW farm, it was a little after 9 am and time to hit the KHP which was pretty much empty on a saturday morning due to the cold which was about 22 degrees. since its outside the gat, we looked and took photos of the secretariat/eddie sweat statue and all the man o war stuff outside the gate.
    heading inside we went thru the museum which you could really spend all day inside looking at and reading all the cool stuff there. we focused on the thoroughbred stuff, specifically all the calumet trophys and calumet memorabilia. after about an hour inside there, we headed out on the grounds and took in the breeds barn before going over to the cemetery area. among the better known thoroughbred graves are Allez france, peteski,sefas beauty and Princess Rooney. following a few minutes ther, headed over to hall of champions. coming in from behind it we walked down the walkway lined with the resing spots of some of racings greats,including FOREGO,BOLD FORBES,KONA GOLD as well as quarter horse champ SGT PEPPER FEATURE.
    the KHP normally has a stallside chat at 11am to see videos and meet the 4 horses currently in there hall of champions barn...CIGAR,GO FOR GIN,FUNNY CIDE and DA HOSS. Normally the horses are brought out for photos but much to my disappoinment, none of that happened. the horses were in there stalls but werent brought out so the only photos i got of any of them were by holding my camera over the top of the door and shooting down..which doesnt result in much usable anything so,unfortunitly i have ZERO pics of any of the four guys at KHP

    since last year, remember theres a word limit,i will end this post here and start on the next part...more coming.....

    knowing that some of the open houses started at noon and we had a private appointment at another farm at 1pm, we wrapped up the KHP at noon and again headed out Iron works pike to CASTLETON LYONS who housed two stallions we wanted to see. the first guy we met was one from last year GIO PONTI. Gio was a favorite last year who was even BETTER this year. hes a little heavier and more filled out all in a good way. Gio is nothing short of stunning!! he has an amazing presence about him. hes the man and he knows it. he always stands well with his ears up and allows for great photos.
    2nd horse we saw newcomer JUSTIN PHILLIP. the dark bay stallion looked more race horse then expected and didn't seem real interested in standing or being walked for anyone...stallion manager says they figure it out with time whats expected. JUSTIN is smaller then Gio and even the stallion manager says"its not really fair to him to show him after gio because of how gio presents himself Justin is NOT a bad looking horse at all, just that Gio is that stunning.
    after seeing those two guys, its was time to head out to versailles and our appointment at Pin Oak stud were we had two horses on our request list.
    First horse we saw was Oaklawn and Peter Pan winner ALTERNATION. the bay son of Distorted Humor has a white right rear foot,other then that he has no markings. hes another first year stallion that still looked racy. beautiful stallion with a nice disposition.
    the other stallion we saw there was SKY CLASSIC. the now 27 year old is believed to be the LAST living son of legendary NIJINSKY II. Sky i saw last year but since hes older, i wanna see him each year since who knows how long he'll be around. Sky is a bright Chestnut who has a blaze and a few white hairs on his feet. SKY was a Canadian and US champion on the grass. hes a little bit sway backed but looked really good for 27. the old man is very friendly which made it possible to touch him, take pics with him and feed him mints which is always fun. he is said to have Zero health issues and still gets a few mares each year. he got 7 of 9 mares in foal last year and the 2 that didn't take weren't his fault as those two never get in foal they said so his fertility is still good.
    at that point it was close to 2pm and we wanted to get over to OLD FRIENDS for the rest of the day. since Laura volunteers there, we were able to go anywhere we wanted and take as much time as we wanted.
    After three hours there, we still hadnt seen and met everyone but we were exhausted and muddy so we called it a day and had dinner. I will do a separate report on OF. not to tease but but i got great pics from there and the best shot of the day is one i was asked to take pics of TINNERS WAY i got an amazing shot of him i will post asap..if anyone has my FB, it is on there already
    we plan to go back out another afternoon since we didn't ever make it over to Gulch, Bull and a few other. after OF we went to dinner with all the OF peeps and called it a night..took 20 minutes to get the mud my off my boots but loved it...more to come later..
  • Wow! That's a lot to cover in one day! Stay warm! :o) brrr!
  • Glad you got your slider fix, Kurt. Thanks for the great report. I'm looking forward to the rest. They are such a treat!

    Stay warm. It usually doesn't get this cold around here; sorry the frigid temps are intruding on your trip.
  • Great report, Kurt! Looking forward to more.....
  • carolinarkansascarolinarkansas hot springs, arkansasMember
    have the best of times....yummmm....sliders
  • Sounds like a really awesome trip!!! Can't wait to see some of your photos - I hope you will post links here when you get a chance. In the mean time - oh my goodness - stay warm!!! Brrrrrr.
  • RachelRachel Member
    edited January 2014
    they just euthanized Patton at Old Friends @kurt, so you wont be able to see him :(
  • Oh no! He was one of my very favorites. A sweeter horse you'd never find. That's heartbreaking.
  • RIP Patton. :( My condolences to all his connections, especially to Carolyn Hine. I dread this time of the year, all the older horses are usually put down due to the infirmities of old age (I'm assuming this is the case), but it is also the most joyful time, when the foals are born - the circle of life.
  • i posted the info on the horse racing injuries and fatalities. he was plagued with ailments lately
  • Enjoying reading all about your trip, Kurt! Can't wait for more! Thank you for sharing!
  • hey guys/gals, i still need to write about saturday afternoon..and old friends. took so many pics of so many horses there, i need to sit down with laura to ID them, so i can talk about who all we saw. will say we saw just about everyone with the exception of Gulch and Bull in the heather, simply because we ran out of lght but plan on seeing them..note to the people who asked for pics of TInners way and Sunshine forever..i got pics of both!!..stunning pic of tinner. also got to see Rapid Redux who they dont show much..perk of goin with one of there volunteers. so,with that in mind, gonna move on to Sunday..


    sunday was an insane busy day that turned out amazing. we were led to believe that the storm was going to come in by noon on sunday so our thought was that we would probably lose part of the day, thus, lets run hard n seee what we can knock out before the weather hits..turned out we saw everything AND MORE we wanted to see on Sunday.
    the hustle of saturday left us tired and sore and we were glad we didnt need to be anywhere before 10am which was the first open house of the Day. # CHIMNEYS opened first and had a very brief 2 hour open house from 10-noon. we arrived about 10:10 am and headed straight to the stallion barn where the first stallion being shown was YES ITS TRUE an 18 year old bay stallion, Yes its true stands 16.1 hands and is 18 years old. he stands for $10k. hes got white markings on his face and a white, left rear. hes a muscular stallion.
    2nd horse was one we wanted to see since were all dynaformer fans. that horse is 6 year old BRILLIANT SPEED. hes a 17 hand..typical Dynaformer dark bay with zero markings on his body. hate to say it but hes the least impressive of the dynaformers weve seen so far. as for personality, hes definitly a dynoformer son. ladys who handles him says he doesnt have his fathers rage and is often ok to be around but when he gets in his moods, hes exactly like his father.
    one of the ladys im doing all this with is semi looking for a stallion for her mare, so while talking to her about BS, she suggested we look at at WAR CHANT.
    War chant is a gorgeous 17 year old son of Danzig and the great Kris S mare, hollywood wildcat. war chant stands 16.2 hands and is a stunning horse who looks alot younger then his age. he has no white feet but does have a small star on his face. he doesnt look like the typical northern dancer line horse, he was one of the best looking horses we saw on the day at 3 chimneys.
    residing in the same barn as war chant is ky derby winner BIG BROWN. like last year, BB is stunning!!. he just has an amazing presence to him. ive never been a big fan of him but when you see him,and i said the same thing last year, he gets your attention. he always stands perfectly for photoss while letting you know hes in charge..beautifull horse!!
    about 50 feet down from the barn housing BB and WC, the next barn houses another son of Danzig..EXCHANGE RATE. also 17 years old, ER stands for 20k and is nothing short of gorgeous. the grey stallion who is white looks alot younger then his age also.
    ER is ridden daily as are all the three chimneys stallion which really makes a noticeable difference. NONE of the three chimneys appear over weight and some look like they could race tomorrow.. interesting the different theory's in stallion care as very few farms ride there horses. one of the woman who rides them says War Chant, at 17 years of age, is still very explosive and loves being ridden and is a handfull to keep from running off.
    after seeing ER, we walked to the last barn at three chimneys, which houses Flower Alley and calebs posse. neither of whom we asked to see but we did see them in there stalls. Caleb is housed in the stall of Dynaformer.
    that was it for the 3C stallions, we walked back up the courtyard to the cemetery to visit with Dynaformer and the others. last year DYNO didnt have his head stone yet so it was nice to see it this year. someone had also placed a red wreath next to it with his name on it..probably that morning as it was very bright.
    that concludes three chimney. we enjoyed the visit and as turned out the whole day, we saw more horses then we thought we would there. favorites at three chim were the two Danzigs, war chant and exchange rate.
    after leaving three chimneys, we took a quick drive thrue Keeneland to show daria where everything happens before heading out to the 2nd open house at CRESTWOOD FARM...details coming up...
  • I'm curious to see the photo of the first Three Chimneys horse you were describing when you download your photos! Can't wait. I know the other experienced gals already know who you just described! :o)
  • Kurt, any plans to pop by the Keeneland sale?

    Looking forward to pics!
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